Eileen Seitz: “The colors of my paintings wake up people’s emotions”

“Inspirational.” “Colorful.” “Alive.” 

Eileen Seitz, a Miami artist, likes things that have character and turns them into colorful paintings that create an inspiring environment. This is her job and joy. Giving life to the jungle, animals, little houses and unique buildings sums up her paintings, which are full of life. 

“My art is a reflection of God’s beauty on the earth and how the various cultures and countries live on the earth,” she says. 

Born in Manhattan, Seitz grew up surrounded by art. 

“My mother came from an artistic and creative family, so she just started giving me crayons and paper and paints and things like that to keep me busy,” she said. 

From a childhood in the city of opportunities, Seitz traveled the world searching for inspiration. She then realized that she loved the tropics. Places she loved became paintings. 

“I get inspired by my environment,” she says. “I could look at the tree and get inspiration, but I have to go to various places because the trees and the architecture speak to me.” 

“South Beach Then and Now” is one of her paintings that captures the spirit of Ocean Drive today and years ago. Vintage cars and bicycles create contrast and show the difference between generations.

“South Beach then and now” by Eileen Seltz

While studying at Pratt Institute in New York City, she took a year off, headed to Mexico from Central Park in New York, and wound up hiking through Central America for three months, ending up in Colombia. With only a black notebook to draw in, she created a book of illustrations of the journey. She later sold some of her work. 

Her travels then took her to Key West, Hawaii, Italy, Portugal and Greece, all places that can be seen in her paintings. 

“Crotons Glory,” she says, was “inspired by the beauty all around us in the Tropical Belt, orchids, blue jays hanging out on the frangipani tree, sandpipers, a beautiful green parrot climbing a coconut tree and seagulls flying. A small colorful wooden dinghy sits on the sand waiting for the next days’ catch.” 

It was Seitz’s fourth-grade teacher who first said she could do composition. By 13, Seitz had decided what she wanted to do for the rest of her life. 

“I want to bring people into the painting so that they can experience what I do, the beauty and the vibration of spirit,” she said. 

Imagery and colors are what make Seitz’s paintings unique. 

“Most people like the colors most,” she says. “My colors are awakening people’s emotions and feelings that may have been repressed. Happiness, joy, peace or gratitude.”

Eileen Seltz poses with one of her favorite pieces, a local market in Mexico (Maider Aranguen/SFMN)

For five years she taught drawing and painting with watercolors to guests on several cruise lines sailing to Spain, Italy, Bora-Bora, Martinique and other countries — experiences that later appear in her art. 

Seitz now offers private lessons at her house. The first step is always color. 

“I’ll teach them color first, then I’ll teach them how to see and draw,” she says. 

During the last few years, she has created pieces that illustrate different views and moments she has lived that have become award-winning pieces.  

Inspiring others through her art is what makes Seitz happy. 

“I even had a man who liked one of my watercolor paintings so much, which had a house drawn on it, that he built it in the Bahamas,” she said. “He actually built my paintings.”

Seitz’s work is available on her website, https://eileenseitz.com/.

Maider Aranguren is a junior majoring in journalism and communication at the University of the Basque Country in Spain who is currently studying at FIU as an exchange student. She has worked as a radio host and is now a content creator for a television program in Spain. She hopes to eventually become a news anchor.